Quick Facts: Maryland

​​​​​​​​​​​Performance Breakdown
  • Law & Policy: 68% of metrics met
     
    • Laws authorizing comprehensive supports and services for youth experiencing homelessness: 83% of metrics met 
       

    • Preventing youth experiencing homelessness from coming into contact with the criminal and juvenile justice systems: 57% of metrics met 
       

    • Providing unaccompanied youth experiencing homelessness the opportunity to seek legal independence and live independently: 63% of metrics met
       

    • Addressing the educational needs of youth experiencing homelessness: 33% of metrics met 
       

    • Allowing youth experiencing homelessness to access critical supports and services: 83% of metrics met 
       

  • Systems: 44% of metrics met 
     
  • Environment: 47% of metrics met

State Score 2021: 60
State Ranking 2020: 14

2021 Score

2020 Score

60

47

Maryland Highlights

Some areas where Maryland has moved the needle relative to other states include providing unaccompanied youth experiencing homelessness the opportunity to seek legal independence and live independently and creating systems to address the needs of youth experiencing homelessness.

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Law & Policy

  • The state allows shelters to take in homeless youth with a delay or waiver of notification requirements.
     

  • The state gives minors contract rights OR allows them to enter into binding contracts for certain purposes (e.g. necessities).
     

  • The state explicitly allows unaccompanied youth under 18 to apply for health insurance coverage without parental consent.

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Systems

  • There is a state entity (Office of homeless youth services, homeless youth state coordinator, commission on homeless youth, etc.) that focuses solely on youth homelessness.

  • There is a state interagency council on homelessness.

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Environment

  • The state has banned conversion therapy for minors on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity or expression.

  • The state promotes safe and inclusive environments in child welfare programs by providing protections based on sexual orientation and gender identity. 

Recommendations for Improvement

There is room for improvement across the metrics for the Old Line State, with emphasis on the Law & Policy category. Laws authorizing comprehensive supports and services for youth experiencing homelessness should be prioritized. Additionally, protecting the rights and interests of youth experiencing homelessness, including LGBTQ youth, should be prioritized.

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Law & Policy

  • The state should not consider running away a criminal offense.

  • The state should provide transportation home after discharge from the juvenile justice system.

  • The state should explicitly allow partial and alternative school credit accrual for homeless youth through regulations.

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Systems

  • The state should create and adopt a public plan to end homelessness that includes youth (and specifically LGBTQ+ youth).

  • The state should not require parental consent for youth to obtain a state-issued identification card.

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Environment

  • The state should require training about sexual orientation, gender identity, and expression, healthy sexual development, or issues specific to LGBTQ youth for staff working in runaway and homeless youth systems.

  • The state should establish protected class status based on one's sexual orientation and gender identity for runaway and homeless youth programs.

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